herald

Friday 9 December 2016

Stabbing victim was terminally ill from years of drug abuse

gardai at scene

GARDAI are investigating whether the murder victim found dumped in west Dublin - who had a terminal illness - was killed for fear he would make a death-bed confession.

The body of Andrew Guerrine (37), from New Street South in the inner city, was found on Saturday morning in the exact same spot where the newborn 'Baby Maria' was found three weeks ago on a stretch of country road off the N7 motorway at Steelstown.

There is no known connection between the two incidents other than Guerrine's killers might have learned from press reports on the discovery of Baby Maria that the stretch of road had no CCTV coverage, gardai believe.

Guerrine was a drug addict and a criminal with links to the top assassin in the State's biggest and most deadly crime gang, sources have told the Herald.

Decay

Meanwhile, local sources in the south inner city say he only had months to live after a steady decline in his health in recent years from drug use.

He was suffering from a form of bodily decay that is common in intravenous drug users who have infections from dirty needles or drugs contaminated with bacteria.

Local people said Guerrine "smelled like a corpse".

He was in the advanced stages of the illness and had been told he had not long to live, the sources said.

The gang - responsible for much of the supply of cocaine, heroin, cannabis and ecstasy to Dublin and much of the rest of the country - is believed to have ordered his murder.

Last night members of his wider family and circle of friends posted messages of support on Guerrine's Facebook page.

His family declined to comment on his death when approached as they gathered a t his home in the south inner city.

Guerrine was arrested and questioned a number of times in relation to gang-related killings but he was never charged with any serious offences.

It is suspected that he might have been murdered, despite the fact it was known he had probably not long to live, in case he decided to make some form of death-bed confession.

The assassin Guerrine was associated with is suspected of carrying out up to 14 murders on behalf of the Spanish-based drugs cartel that has become the dominant force in Irish organised crime.

Gardai suspect the order for Guerrine's murder may have come from inside prison where a number of key figures in the crime syndicate are currently serving terms.

The gang is probably responsible for between a quarter and a third of the gangland killings in Dublin in recent years, gardai say. It is believed they are responsible for the murder on March 26 last of Paul Kavanagh (29) who was shot dead in broad daylight on the main Drumcondra Road in north Dublin.

wounds

It is thought Paul Kavanagh was murdered because of a drug debt he 'inherited' from his brother, Gerard 'Hatchet' Kavanagh (44), who was shot dead at a bar in Elviria outside Marbella last September.

The post-mortem carried out on Guerrine on Saturday by Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster is understood to have indicated he was killed from repeated stab wounds to his body and neck.

It is believed he was murdered elsewhere and his body transported to Steelstown via Junction 5 on the N7, which is one of the few slip-roads on the motorway which has no commercial premises nearby and is not covered by CCTV.

The body was spotted by a driver who alerted gardai at 2.50am on Saturday. It was initially thought he might have been killed in a hit-and-run.

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